Bridesmaid Makeup

Bridesmaid wearing natural makeup

Hours of shopping go into picking out bridesmaid dresses, and just as much thought should go into bridesmaid makeup, if you want a picture-perfect day.

An Individual Approach

Many women joke about the collection of ugly bridesmaid dresses hanging in their closet, but in reality it's not such a funny thing. When we choose bridesmaid dresses a number of things should be taken into consideration including the various sizes and skin tones of the bridesmaids. Similar care should be taken when choosing colors for bridesmaid makeup. Approaching what makeup to wear as part of a wedding party with a one-color or look for all the bridesmaids does not work for many women. We are all unique. A bridesmaid with a hooded eye won't want to wear a thick line of eyeliner, while someone with a full eyelid may look great with a thicker eyeliner application. If the bride wants everyone to look their best, bridesmaid makeup should be determined on an individual basis.

Schedule for Perfect Bridesmaid Makeup

If you want perfect bridesmaid makeup, you'll want to start with perfect skin. Take care of your skin prior to the wedding and take the time to find out what color makeup will complement your dress, skin tone and eye color.

Skin Care

  • Cleanse: Well hydrated, clear skin is best for applying makeup. Take extra care in cleaning your face each night to remove makeup and oil that can clog pores and lead to blemishes and breakouts. For best results, you'll need to choose skin care products right for your skin.
  • Exfoliate: Along with cleansing, exfoliate once a week.
  • Moisturize: Some people with oily skin think they don't need to moisturize, but that is not the case. If you have oily skin, choose an oil free moisturizer. Don't use a heavy moisturizer that over-moisturizes. It can cause clogged pores.


When choosing foundation, find one that matches your skin tone. Test foundation shades on the back of your hand rather than your wrist. Your hand gets more sun and is a closer match to the skin tone on your face. If you're not sure, stop by a cosmetic counter and talk with a specialist. Ask for help in choosing the shade right for your face. In stores that sell quality makeup, they often have samples you can take home and try. Ask if they have samples available so you can test the color in natural as well as artificial lighting.

Eye Shadow

The bride may have an idea of what she'd like when it comes to the application of eye shadow. For an evening wedding, she may want bridesmaids to have that smoky eye look appropriate for evening. No matter how the eye shadow will be applied, you still want to be sure to choose a shade that complements your face and eyes as well as the bridesmaid dress. Eye shadow should softly contrast the color of your eyes. Natural shades work best and can blend well. Here are some guidelines to help you choose eye shadow shades right for your eyes:

  • Blue eyes: Soft browns and tans with sandy or pink undertones.
  • Hazel or green eyes: Khaki or brown shades with yellow undertones.
  • Brown eyes: Brown and charcoal shadows.


Finding the right color eyeliner for your eyes is important as well. If in doubt, charcoal and navy eyeliner works for everyone. Here are the basic guidelines for an individualized application:

  • Blue eyes: Brown or bronze eyeliner.
  • Hazel or green eyes: Purple or brown.
  • Brown eyes: Bronze, champagne, copper, khaki-green, and beige.

Professional Makeup Services

Another option to consider, if it can fit into the budget, is hiring a professional makeup artist. This will take all the guess work out of makeup application as the makeup artist will meet with you to choose colors and apply makeup in a trial session prior to the wedding. If you decide to go this route there are a few things that must be determined ahead of time including who is going to pay for the services. While having a makeup artist's expert help with choosing the right colors and applying the makeup takes the stress out of makeup application for the wedding party, this specialty service doesn't always fit into everyone's budget.

Keeping Everyone Happy

Brides can get to the point where they micromanage every aspect of their big day. Really you can't blame them. It costs a lot of money, and it is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many. If your bride friend is concerned about all the details down to what makeup her bridesmaids plan to wear for the wedding, plan to have a pre-wedding makeup party where everyone puts on their wedding day face. It not only lets the bride see how your makeup will look for the wedding, but it gives you some extra practice to make sure makeup application goes smoothly on the big day.

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